Sunday, January 9, 2011
The Sunday Question
Which literary character would you most like to be?
I really believe in parallel universes. Somewhere, another version of me is leading a completely different life. Usually, I think it must be a far better one. In that other universe, I am rich, successful, have a more fulfilling life altogether. I dress better, too. I think my compulsive reading (and writing) springs from this desire to inhabit other worlds. So naturally, I often ponder which character I would be, which book I'd inhabit, given the opportunity.
It's not so easy to choose, though, not as easy as you'd think. Most of my favorite characters have pretty wretched, or at least uncomfortable lives. I wouldn't really want to be Jane Eyre, for instance. Who would want to spend her childhood at Gateshead with the horrible Reeds? Or have to roam the moors for days with nothing to eat after discovering her fiance kept his mad wife in the attic? Not me.
I think, given the choice, I'd be Mma Ramotswe, Alexander McCall Smith's #1 Lady Detective. First of all, Botswana, where she resides, is nice and hot. Pretty compelling in the midst of a New England winter. It is quite possibly the most stable African country, and that's a plus. But aside from geographic considerations, Mma Ramotswe is wise, kind and strong. She has a respected place in her community, old friends, a sweet-tempered husband (maybe a little too sweet-tempered), and has taken in a couple of nice adopted orphans. She's had her problems, and sometimes gets into dangerous situations, but altogether, she has a very good life.
Stability seems to be key for most of the people I asked in our current universe. Nieves would like to be Anne Elliot, from Persuasion. Her reason being, Anne is one of the more quiet, but independent Austen heroines. It is only her travails, pain and heartbreak that really show her that what she wants, and wanted from the start were really worth waiting for.
Marika would be Morwen, from Dealing with Dragons, (by Patricia C. Wrede), who is a witch with a very stable life. She has doors to just about anywhere, too, which comes in handy.
I caught Diana in an interesting frame of mind -- she wants to be Dracula.
Emily Crowe says: "I'd love to have the life of either Anne Shirley, of Green Gables fame, or of Emily Byrd Starr, both created by L. M. Montgomery. Creative, mischievous, good-hearted and intellectually curious heroines, the both of them."
She'd be very popular in Japan, too.
My apologies to Sophia. I lost the post it on which she'd written her character, and it was a book I'm not familiar with. It has the word "summer" in the title, so maybe she's tired of the cold, too.
Let us know which character you would be if you could.